Weathering of fuel oil spill on the east Mediterranean coast, Ashdod, Israel

Shai Ezra, Shimon Feinstein, Ithamar Pelly, Dan Bauman, Irena Miloslavsky

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

70 Scopus citations


Residual fuel oil spilled into the sea from the Eshkol power station on 8 February, 1998 contaminated about 9 km of the foreshore north of the Ashdod harbour. A study of the aliphatic, polycyclic alkane and polyaromatic hydrocarbon (PAH) composition of the spilled oil shows rapid weathering in the early stages followed by gradual slowdown after about three months. Weathering of isoprenoids and PAH compounds and variation in Pr/Ph ratio appear to occur almost contemporaneously with that of n-alkanes, at a relatively moderate level of degradation, when much of the > C20 n-alkane envelope is still well preserved. Depletion of various compounds in accordance with molecular size rather than molecular structure appears to imply that physical weathering processes, i.e. evaporation and perhaps flushing due to wave energy, might have played an important role in the degradation of the .spilled residual fuel oil in this study case.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1733-1741
Number of pages9
JournalOrganic Geochemistry
Issue number12
StatePublished - 1 Dec 2000


  • East Mediterranean foreshore
  • Fuel oil spill
  • Hydrocarbons
  • Pollution
  • Weathering

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geochemistry and Petrology


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